Some of the most commonly abused substances in the United States aren’t illegal or illicit and can be prescribed by medical professionals. Prescription drug abuse has become an increasingly prevalent public health issue in recent years. It is crucial to recognize the signs and seek early treatment to prevent severe consequences since millions of people throughout America may be at risk. Prescription medications, when used correctly, can be life-saving. However, when misused, they can lead to addiction, physical and mental health issues, and even death.
If you think someone you know may be struggling with prescription drug addiction, getting them professional help is best. If you live in Idaho, there are multiple options for treatment. Whether you are looking for a sober living facility or an opioid rehab in Boise, ID, there is support to be found. However, before getting a friend or loved one treatment, it’s crucial to spot the signs of prescription drug abuse.
About Prescription Drug Abuse
Prescription drug abuse occurs when someone takes a prescription medication in a manner other than prescribed or for reasons not intended by the prescriber.
Commonly Abused Prescriptions Drugs
The most commonly abused prescription drugs fall into three categories:
- Opioids – Pain relievers such as oxycodone, hydrocodone, and morphine
- Central nervous system (CNS) depressants – Sedatives and tranquilizers, including benzodiazepines—such as Xanax, Valium, and barbiturates
- Stimulants – Drugs used to treat attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)—such as Adderall and Ritalin
Prescription drug abuse includes taking someone else’s prescription, using a higher dose than prescribed, or using the medication recreationally to achieve a “high.”
Signs of Prescription Drug Abuse
The signs of prescription drug abuse can be physical, behavioral, or emotional and will vary depending on the drug being abused. Common signs include:
- Slurred speech
- Unsteady gait or poor coordination
- Constricted or dilated pupils
- Changes in appetite or weight
- Social withdrawal or isolation
- Sudden changes in hobbies or interests
- Mood swings or irritability
- Anxiety or depression
- Lack of motivation
It’s important to note that these symptoms are not exhaustive, and each individual will react to prescription drugs uniquely.
Importance of Early Intervention and Treatment
Early treatment for prescription drug addiction is vital for several reasons.
Prevention of Health Complications
Prolonged drug abuse can lead to severe health issues, including liver damage, kidney failure, respiratory problems, and cardiovascular diseases. Early intervention can help prevent or minimize these complications.
Improved Mental Health
Drug addiction often co-occurs with mental health conditions. Early treatment can help address these issues and improve overall mental well-being. Treatment of co-occurring conditions, where a person has both a substance use disorder and a mental health issue, is much more complicated and involved than treating either condition alone.
Restoration of Relationships
Addiction can strain personal and professional relationships. Early intervention can help repair these connections and rebuild trust with loved ones. A person’s support networks are crucial in their recovery, and they must be able to rely on friends and family members.
Reduced Risk of Overdose
Early treatment can help reduce the risk of accidental overdose or drug-related death. This is especially important for opioids and other powerful drugs that can easily cause an overdose when abused.
Greater Chance of Long-term Recovery
Early intervention increases the likelihood of successful long-term recovery, as the individual has more time to learn and practice coping skills and develop a support network to maintain sobriety.
Start Recovery in an Addiction Treatment Program Today
It’s important to remember that individuals who struggle with addiction are more than just a collection of symptoms. They are people with their own needs and goals, and getting them away from commonly abused substances and invested in their recovery is the best way to encourage them to seek help. If you’ve been looking for a benzo addiction treatment program in Idaho for a friend or loved one, there are resources to help you find the support you need. Start their recovery journey off right in a substance abuse treatment program.